With opinions sharply divided on the future of the Kenilworth Corridor between Lake of the Isles and Cedar Lake in Minneapolis, let’s take a moment today to look to the past and mark the centennial of the formal opening of the Cedar-Isles canal.

At 2 p.m. on Nov. 8, 1913, our Park Board commissioners and Superintendent Theodore Wirth cruised from Lake Calhoun into Lake of the Isles and then through the new 2,200-foot canal connecting Isles to Cedar Lake. The party sailed around Cedar Lake, then held a ceremony formally linking the lakes. Four years later, with the completion of the Brownie Lake canal, our Chain of Lakes grew to four.

As we work to grow Minneapolis and our region into the future, let’s strive to build on the vision and labor of Wirth and citizens of the past who bequeathed to us the parks, trails and green space we treasure today.